My daughter is 5 and SUPER excited to be a big sister. We live with my BF and she adores him. About a year ago her father stopped seeing her because he got a new GF that got pregnant. They got married and now don't attempt to contact me at all. His new wife doesn't want my daughter around unless I give up all my rights to her and let them take full custody. This new wife also has an extensive criminal record and history of suicide depression etc. She has also been spanking her daughter from her last marriage since she was barely a toddler and says that I am a horrible mother because my father helped put me through college while I was a single mom. So obviously I don't want this woman in my daughter's life anyways!
Anywho, It's been a year and my daughter is slowly getting passed not having her dad around anymore. I know she misses him and always will, but there's not much I can do about it other than put her into an unsafe situation which I'll never let happen! She loves my BF and says that when we get married he will be her new daddy (but only if she can be the flower girl ) We are all excited about the baby (I'm due the first of next month) but noone is as excited as her!
My problem is more of a worry than an actual issue... yet. At my baby shower my family got TONS of cloths for my new LO. But alot of it says Daddy's Little Girl, Daddy's Little Princess etc. Almost 50% of the shirts and onesies say something about daddy. I feel like they were buying those things to get brownie points with him (I don't get along with my family because they wanted to take my first daughter when she was born)
My real issue is I'm worried it's going to bother my daughter to be reminded that her dad is no longer around. She is 5 and therefore just learning how to read so it's not like she won't notice. My BF and his family accepts my daughter fully and completely and she loves them, but her little heart hurts from what her daddy did to her..
HI there - first of all, congrats on your new little one - that will be a big, exciting change for everyone, for sure. AND it will be a huge transition for everyone, including your daughter.
My suggestion would be to ahve your BF do something special for your daughter now, before baby comes, that tells her that she is special & important to him, too. Of course he will have a different relationship with is own child, and she will have a different relationship with him than the new LO will. It seems like her knowing that even if this baby is daddy's little girl, she hols a unique place in his heart too, would be healthy for everyone.
Jen - Partner to Joe, Craig, & Jordan , mama to DS1 (7/13/99), DS2 (10/27/01), and DS3 (6/13/06), and DS4 born 12/13/12! Attachment Parent, co-sleeper, baby-wearer, Sudbury School founder & educator, PhD Candidate doing birth research, cloth diaper lover, GF (again), etc!
I am definately going to talk to him about it. They already spent a lot of time together, but I think it'd be good for them to do something special. Lately I've been preparing them for when I will be in the hospital. They've never spent a whole night alone together so it will be interesting to see how he handles bedtime
He and his family have been extremely supportive and loving though. I really feel lucky that I finally found someone that understands that my daughter and I are a package deal. Only one more week! We are getting VERY eager.
At my baby shower my family got TONS of cloths for my new LO. But alot of it says Daddy's Little Girl, Daddy's Little Princess etc. Almost 50% of the shirts and onesies say something about daddy. I feel like they were buying those things to get brownie points with him (I don't get along with my family because they wanted to take my first daughter when she was born)
Do you HAVE to use these clothes? I can see how that would be a sore point for your older DD. Could you just.... put them away, or sell them at a consignment shop or something?
but everything has pros and cons
I totally agree. Newborns and infants grow out of onesies like crazy (or ruin them through blowouts, etc.). Just donate them. Or exchange them. Or return for store credit (if it's BRU or similar). Maybe keep a couple for "photo ops" for the relatives.
I will probably be returning the ones that still have tags on them. I am keeping all the brand new cloths intact just in case we end up needing to trade in all this pink for some blue! My family is so all over the place that I don't even think they would notice if they never saw her in any of the cloths they got her. There might be one or two that I keep just because I like them, but we shall see! Thank you guys for all of your input! I really appreciate it!
Some things about growing up would be different between the two children, including some feelings of jealousy, even if they were "full" siblings. Fortunately there's loads of books/articles about dealing with those aspects of bringing a new child into the home. Any child welcoming a little sibling into the family is probably afraid of being displaced or not loved anymore. Looking at it from this perspective, it seems like it would be very important (for both you and DP) to continue (or increase) doting on DD and dedicating time to her and being excited to see her, expressing love and affection for her, and reinforcing that the new baby doesn't change how important she is and how much everyone loves her.
One thing that she may be old enough to pick up on, is that the new baby may bring the family closer together--that it means you and her (unofficial) stepfather are going to be together for the long term. That may help bring her comfort that at least she won't suffer another loss.
I agree that the "daddy's girl" kind of tshirts could be rough for DD to handle. But what about if DP helps DD feel more secure and loved by calling her "DP's big girl" or telling her "you're my big girl!" He can refer to them as a pair as "my girls." Reduce the significance of the statement as it applies to only his biological daughter by applying it to both the girls (even if it's in a slightly different way). I think any feelings of being left out or less loved than DP's "real" daughter will always be a potential issue in the way your family treats it, so while returning some of the clothing might fix the immediate problem, I don't think it will ever go away entirely (not to say you shouldn't be thoughtful of the here and now, too).
One glimmer of silver lining is that you don't have to worry about DD's father being angry about DP "replacing" him so DP is able to welcome DD like one of his own more than he might be able to otherwise (an involved dad understandably wouldn't take well to your DP calling "his" little girl DP's). DP can never be DD's father but certainly he can try fill the empty shoes of Dad.
(DSD 10yo) (29wks - 2/2012) (1/2013)